IMG 1091Reluctantly leaving Ile d'Oleron we are making a larger day to Brissac Quince, near Angers. It's forecast to be hot today - mid twenties - which will be a relief.

The mornings highlight is the cranes that have taken up residence on the power pylons along the route. Doubtless this is not popular with the power company!

After an hour or so we stop at Sugeries for a much needed water and then onwards. No backroads today as there is too much distance to cover and the temperature has crept up to the high twenties.

Someway beyond our stop, in the middle of the countryside, on the D746, the Spyder coasts to a stop. Motor running but nothing happens, a brief look reveals the belt has gone west so no more driving today.

Luckily there is a bit of shade under a hedge at the side of the road, unluckily this is the home of a termite mound complete with unhappy termites. Quite some time on the phone including a very frustrating and lengthy call to a fellow in an Asian call IMG 1092center whose knowledge of the UK and English was particularly limited, he could not spell or pronounce "Slough". Finally a tow truck arrived and took Mary and the Spyder to Cognac and I drove there under my own steam (peage in 36C heat).

The problem with the trike is much more major than at first glance as the sprocket has come off the main drive and made a mess of various engine parts. It's going to be costly and we won't know if the parts are available or how much they will be until the morning.

The people at "Quad Bike Evasion" in Cognac are more than helpful, have good English and help us arrange a hotel and point us towards a rental car company (closed of course by now, after 6pm). They even give Mary a lift there.

The Hôtel François Premier in Cognac town Centre has a most welcome shower and beer. Le Coq d'Or over the road is much less lovely and has mostly non existent service and A barely adequate dinner.

Not the greatest day.